Northwestern Ruling Set To Issue: ABC 7 News reports that yesterday, National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) regional director Peter Sung Ohr issued a statement providing that he expected to issue a ruling by tomorrow on whether football players at Northwestern University can form a labor union. A hearing on the issue closed at the end of last month. Ohr’s ruling, regardless of the outcome, will in all likelihood simply be the first step in a long legal battle for the players since any decision will probably be appealed. We have been watching this case very closely and will be sure to keep you posted on the ruling.
Chicago Tribune Argues For Northwestern Union Rights: Phil Rosenthal of the Chicago Tribune writes that the National Labor Relations Board should rule in the Northwestern football team’s favor and allow them to form a labor union. Rosenthal notes in particular how much money universities are making from college athletics, especially this time of year with the NCAA basketball tournament. Rosenthal further argues that at least some protections for players are necessary, particularly because of the tenous nature of the scholarship process.
Northwestern Officials Issue Warning Over Player Union: WQAD 8 writes that the president emeritus of Northwestern University has warned that the school could give up Division I football if the football players form a labor union. Henry Bienen, president of the University from 1995 to 2009, noted that the collective bargaining process could scare other academic institutions into dropping football as well.